Paul Ferguson has two selections for us on Wednesday from Haydock; Softsong at 3.45 and Annacotty at 4.50 Compare odds and bet.
Despite not having a winner for a fortnight, Philip Hobbs has saddled several placed horses recently and he has strong claims of ending his winless run at Haydock on Wednesday.
Firstly, he saddles Thunderstorm in the 2m4f handicap hurdle and JP McManus’ eight-year-old is a worthy favourite as he goes in search of a six-timer. This looks competitive, however, despite just four going to post, with Crowning Jewel in decent form and Seymour Eric another on a roll. The latter ideally wants further, but will surely try to make this a real stamina test.
At the prices, I’d rather back Hobbs’ Softsong (3:45) in the 2m handicap, with Boylesports offering 11/2 last night. Just 4lb higher than when third to Petit Robin in a Listed event at Sandown on his penultimate start, he shaped better than the bare form would suggest last time and will be hard to kick out of the frame.
Fifth to the smart Court Minstrel on his debut for the stable, the five-year-old then got within 3 lengths of the 135-rated Valdez at Huntingdon and he remains on a reasonable mark. Better ground may suit in the spring, but this looks a drop in class and he looks capable of going close under Richard Johnson.
The 2m4f novices’ hurdle, another contest over the “fixed brush” flights, looks a competitive heat, with in form chaser and regular in this column Brave Spartacus reverting to the smaller obstacles.
Given he won a handicap chase off 130 last time, he looks capable of scoring at this level, but Annacotty (4:50) looks a promising type for Martin Keighley and is taken to make it two from two over hurdles.
The five-year-old finished third in a decent looking bumper at Kempton on debut and he got off the mark on debut over timber at Chepstow last month. The second and fourth have since come out and won and the son of Beneficial, who won an Irish point before joining current connections, can defy his penalty.
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Last Year’s Book Results – Leading Prospects:
- SPRINTER SACRE – Unbeaten – winner at Aintree & Cheltenham
- SIMONSIG – Winner at Aintree & Cheltenham
- CINDERS AND ASHES – 10/1 winner of Supreme Novices Hurdle
- BOBS WORTH – 9/2 winner of the RSA Chase
- MENORAH & SILVINIACO CONTI – Both Aintree Winners
- SIR DES CHAMPS – Unbeaten inc 3/1 Jewson Cheltenham Winner
- FINGAL BAY – Won 4 times inc Challow Hurdle
- RAYA STAR – 10/3 winner at Wetherby, 12/1 Ladbroke Hurdle winner, 15/2 Scottish Champion Hurdle winner
- AMBION WOOD – 14/1 EBF Final Sandown winner
- CHAMPION COURT – 6/1 G2 Dipper Novices Chase winner
- PALACE JESTER – 14/1 winner at FFos Las
- SWINCOMBE FLAME – Hat-trick winner inc Lanzarote Hurdle at 9/2
- TEAFOR THREE – 5/1 NH Cheltenham Chase winner (Manifesto Novices’ Chase)